WVSU College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics Fall Convocation set for Sept. 26

Contact: Jack Bailey
(304) 766-4109
Sept. 19, 2013
WVSU College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics Fall Convocation set for Sept. 26
Topics to be Covered Include the American Chemical Society and “Green Chemistry”

INSTITUTE, W.Va. – The College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics at West Virginia State University (WVSU) will hold its Fall Convocation Thursday, Sept. 26, at 12:30 p.m. in the Hamblin Hall Auditorium featuring keynote speakers Dr. Mary Kirchhoff, director of the Education Division for the American Chemical Society, and Dr. Tom Barton, president-elect of the American Chemical Society (ACS).

“WVSU is very honored and fortunate to have Dr. Mary Kirchhoff and Dr. Thomas Barton as the speakers for the College on Natural Sciences and Mathematics Fall Convocation,” said Dr. Micheal Fultz, assistant professor of Chemistry. “Dr. Kirchhoff has spent years working in the area of science education and has inspired a new generation of teachers and professors across the country to give back to the next generation of students, preparing them for their future. Dr. Barton has dedicated his life to advancing science through research and education and is a positive influence to the scientific community as the president-elect of the ACS.”

The focus of the Convocation presentation will be “ACS: Serving Learners and Educators.” Education is a prominent feature in the charter of the ACS, which promotes the education of both citizens and professional chemists. Education equips professional chemists, as well as all members of society, to advance in the new millennium, developing 21st century solutions to complex problems. This presentation will examine the challenges and opportunities facing science education today and will highlight the educational resources of the ACS.

WVSU student members of the ACS will host an additional presentation from Dr. Kirchhoff for the Kanawha Valley Section of the ACS Wednesday, Sept. 25, at 7 p.m. in the Hamblin Hall Auditorium. This presentation is open to the public, and the topic will be “Green Chemistry: Theory and Practice: What are the Alternatives to Toxic Chemicals?”

“I am excited for our students to have the opportunity to hear from such noteworthy national science leaders. It is important for our students to see how scientists like Drs. Kirchhoff and Barton have made a positive impact on the world. They are great role models for our students,” said Dr. Katherine Harper, dean of the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics.

Kirchhoff received a bachelor’s degree from Russell Sage College, a master’s degree from Duquesne University and a doctorate from the University of New Hampshire. She spent nine years on the faculty at Trinity College in Washington, D.C. and three years as an American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) environmental fellow and visiting scientist at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) prior to joining the ACS Green Chemistry Institute in 2001.

Barton earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Lamar University in 1962 and a doctorate in organic chemistry from the University of Florida in 1967, the same year he completed a National Institutes of Health postdoctoral fellowship at Ohio State University. Barton was a research scientist and chemistry professor at Iowa State University for 45 years before retiring in May 2012. He will serve as president-elect of the ACS in 2013 before becoming president in 2014.

For more information, contact Dr. Katherine Harper at (304) 766-3142 or harperkl@wvstateu.edu.
West Virginia State University is a public, land grant, historically black university, which has evolved into a fully accessible, racially integrated, and multi-generational institution, located in Institute, W.Va. As a “living laboratory of human relations,” the university is a community of students, staff, and faculty committed to academic growth, service, and preservation of the racial and cultural diversity of the institution. Its mission is to meet the higher education and economic development needs of the state and region through innovative teaching and applied research.
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